Planning Forum - Plenary, Alison Allden: 'Transparency, evidence & change, information that is fit for purpose'
Transparency, evidence and change –Information that is fit for purpose Alison Allden Chief Executive The Higher Education Statistics AgencyAUA Planning Forum, LeedsFebruary 2012Landscape images courtesy of David Hockney
Interim Regulatory Partnership Group(IRPG)• Established September 2011• To advise on and oversee the transition to the new regulatory and funding systems for higher education in England• Interim in status pending outcomes of DBIS consultation• http://www.hefce.ac.uk/aboutus/irpg/
Interim Regulatory Partnership Group(IRPG)HEFCE and SLC as joint chairs• HESA• Office for Fair Access• Office of Independent Adjudicator• Quality Assurance AgencyObservers:UUK, GuildHE, NUS, UCAS
Interim Regulatory Partnership Group(IRPG)Two projects:• Project A: Mapping the current HE regulatory system• Project B: Review of the data and information landscape
Project A: Mapping the CurrentHE regulatory systemTimescale:• By March 2012 – a map of the current HE system from perspective of students, providers and regulatory bodies• By June 2012 – recommendations, identifying opportunities for change• Project team: David James (HEFCE) Therese Russell (Deloittes) Steering Group Chair: David Wallace (SLC)
Project A: Mapping the CurrentHE regulatory systemProject Aims• A comprehensive map of the present English HE funding and regulatory system• Complemented by a commentary on how that system is potentially impacted by the further changes that the Government wants.• It will be more tentative if – as seems likely – we have not at that point seen the Government’s conclusions following its White Paper and Technical consultations.• There is then a potential phase 2 to the project which will aim to develop a target operating model for the whole of the new funding and regulatory system for HE.• This might involve revisions to the roles and responsibilities of agencies in the system.
Background to Project B• Principles of Better Regulation – HEBRG• HEBRG Survey of data collection• Map of the current Information Landscape• Vision for future Information Landscape• Delivered to BIS Dec 2010• White Paper Reference 2011• Project Launched 2012
HEBRG Survey of Data results• Approximately 550 lines of external reporting were identified• The amount of external reporting is linked to specific subjects or types of activity undertaken by institutions• The reports and returns have been grouped into seven main categories• Different universities control and manage data returns in different ways
HEBRG Survey of Data resultsHE funding bodies Returns required by organisations whose primary function includes funding higher education; includes funding councils, research councils, TDA. This category includes some systematic duplication due to different funding bodies operating in different parts of the UKHE regulation and Returns required by sector organisations whose primary function is something otherreporting than funding; includes HESA, QAA, OFFA, OIANHS bodies A variety of national and regional NHS organisations; includes strategic health authoritiesOptional A broad category for optional returns, including data supplies to Press/media, sectorsurveys/publications bodies, and optional accreditation bodies; also Includes benchmarking surveysOther funding bodies Bodies that distribute funding to a range of organisations, including HE institutionsProfessional/academic Usually linked to specific departments and/or courses and often Involves the award of aaccreditation professional status to successful graduatesStatutory reporting A broad category that covers statutory reporting that is not specific to HE; includes Companies House, pensions, local councils, equality, Energy, FoI. Also includes regulation of specific controlled substances and scientific procedures
HEBRG survey of data collection HE funding bodies HE regulation and reporting NHS Optional surveys/publications Other funding bodies Professional/academic accreditation Statutory reporting
Higher Education White Paper –Putting Students at the Heart of the System• The Higher Education White Paper• A new system that: – Meets the needs of a wider group of users – Reduces duplication – Results in timelier and more relevant data• Also work with other government departments – Secure buy-in to reducing the burden
Information Landscape Project risks• Constraint of time• Constraint of resource• Issue of size• Issue of complexity• Required engagement• Governance
Information Landscape Proposed Scope• Focus on issues around student and course data – potential biggest wins for – Reducing burden – Improving information availability/accessibility• Aim for greatest breadth, even if this means some compromise on depth (in this initial project)
Information Landscape Proposed Scope -UK issue• The extent to which the HE data and information landscape is a UK-wide system• This project is the result of an English initiative (and English funding)• Working across the UK brings both risks and opportunities
Information Landscape Proposed Scope -Further Issues• Data transparency and data sharing – Legal considerations – IPR – Linking data• Terminology and data Standards – Courses report – Information Standards Board – JISC CETIS – HESA definitions• Policy and processes that require data – KIS, AAB – Project A
Transparency and the HE White Paper(2.18) But it should be possible to go much further. We are thereforeasking the major holders of student data – the Higher EducationStatistics Agency, UCAS, HEFCE and the SLC – to make more dataavailable on their websites in a re-usable format, and at more detailedlevels (such as by institution and course) so that, for example, studentscan compare likely future earnings. We will welcome feedback andchallenge on whether this is successfully taking place.Ref HE White Paper Para 2.18
Higher Education White PaperPutting Students at the Heart of the System• The issue, for the most part, is not the existence or collection of the data, but;• How it can be made available and linked in ways that make sense to potential students, their families, schools, employers and others with an interest.• Each university will now make the most requested items available on its website, on an easily comparable basis.• Information about each course, together with information about course charges, is called the Key Information Set (KIS).
Press Release BISMinister commits Government to easing burdens on universitiesMinister commits Government to easing burdens on universities19 January 2012 12:15 Politeia Winter AddressThe Minister will also say that the Government has listened to calls from universitiesabout the cost of data collection:"I have discussed the issue of data collection with people from across the HEsector, and there is a widespread desire to go back to first principles. We needto establish precisely what information we already collect, what we actuallyneed and why – and to reconcile the two, so that collection is useful andproportionate for all institutions concerned.“Im pleased that the Information Landscape project – launched just lastmonth, and with input from all parts of the sector – is seeking answers to theseessential questions. The project website goes live tomorrow. Participants will beidentifying any quick wins for easing the burden on universities, as well aspublishing a road map for implementing a simpler model overall."
PrinciplesWe would welcome views on thenumber and level of principles:• Getting the principles right at the outset will pay dividends• Buy-in to the principles is essential to frame future work• Landscape principles
Proposed Principles• Pursue the aim of ‘collect once use many times’ wherever practicable, working to align different bodies to avoid duplication of effort.• Enable the collection of essential, comprehensive, consistent and timely information that meets the requirements of the new regulatory framework in England and is, so far as possible, fit for purpose across the UK HE landscape.• Achieve efficiency and data sharing through the development and adoption of information and technical standards.
Proposed Principles (cont.)• Ensure any data can be trusted and attributed to its provenance by defining robust quality assurance processes.• Foster open access to information wherever possible while respecting IPR, DPA and other regulatory, statutory and information management requirements for the processing of data.• Seek to manage demands for increased data collection and mitigate these through well-targeted use of technology, looking where possible to streamline data collection.
What is the Information Landscapeproject for?• The first meeting of the Project Steering Group was held on 11 January chaired by Steve Egan Deputy Chief Executive and Director (Finance and Corporate Resources) HEFCE• Each of the group members was invited to share their expectations and hopes for the project and the ‘Wordle’ shows the terms that came up most frequently. The size of each word or phrase reflects its popularity
What is burden? Policy and data? No reasons for data? Wrong and unhelpful data? Statutory Customers and HEIs? Not useful to those who provide it? Too much data? Requirements not clearly defined and agreed?Duplicate Review Process not asking right people? Record requests? Not used by those who receive it?
The Project Deliverables• Stakeholder Engagement and • Data Available / Systems Communications Strategy Inventory• Communications Plan • Known and used standards -• Communications (including information and technical project website, mailing list) • Roadmap (including identification• Workshops of early wins)• Interviews • High-level Feasibility study to• Information Requirements identify options for change and Analysis deliver an impact analysis to inform further work
Engage with the projecthttp://landscape.hesa.ac.uk• Join our online Briefing Session The project team will hold an online briefing session on Wednesday 15 February from 11am to midday. Project Director, Andy Youell will give a short presentation and the project team will be on hand to answer questions and receive feedback.• Join our JISCMAIL List HE-INFO-LANDSCAPE@jiscmail.ac.uk (Sign up at https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/HE-INFO-LANDSCAPE)
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